UFC 210: Cormier vs Johnson 2- “Rewind, Repeat, Retire”

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Once again the UFC’s endeavor into New York state is surrounded by controversy. Daniel Cormier retained his Light Heavyweight title, Anthony Johnson calls it a career, and Gegard Mousasi stops former Middleweight champion Chris Weidman- kind of. Let’s take a look at what went right and what went so very wrong on Saturday night.

What Went Right?
  • He didn’t turn heads like he was expected to but Bibulatov got the win nonetheless. Despite losing a point for multiple low blows, his wrestling eventually took over the fight.
  • After a grinding debut win, Gillespie could not have asked for a better sophomore fight blasting Holbrook out of there extremely quickly. He might not have the best hands, but he has power and room to grow.
  • Despite the toughness of Rosa, Burgos was just too much on the feet. I assumed Rosa was going to be able to survive the full 15, but those were some massive shots he took at the end of the bout.
  • I have to think there is a short list of fighters wanting to face Usman after another strong performance. Strickland, as expected, was just too passive and got buried under the pressure and pace of Kamaru. He fights a numbered opponent next.
  • The fight was about as one sided as I and most other expected it to be. Jury gets a win and his feet under him at Featherweight. He’ll be up for a bigger test next time out.
  • I want to wish all the best to Patrick Cote as he walks away from the sport. Alves was simply the better man on this fight, getting the better of most of the striking exchanges. I look forward to Thiago’s next fight, potentially with a ranked opponent.
  • Talk about making a name for yourself quickly. Calvillo looked good on the feet early and then showcased her impressive mat game building up to the finish. The UFC might just have something here with this you Strawweight, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. She still has a long way to go.
What Went Wrong?
  • Aldana has yet to win a fight outside of the first round. She was unable to find her mark early and Chookagian used her kicks to keep her out of power range for the majority of the fight on route to a decision win.
  • It was a close fight, but Green simply landed better strikes and was a little busier that Emmett when it counted.
  • The opening round could not have gone better for Blachowicz, landing at will and almost finishing a badly hurt Cummins. The Big Pole’s exertion in pursuit of the finish appeared to cost him as Cummins took over the fight with his wrestling and rallied to win a decision.
  • What a disaster. I originally picked Oliveira to win the fight and switch to Brooks just before I recorded my show. That was rough. The former Bellator champion allowed the Brazilian to tie up with him while they were still dry. It was all academic from there. Brooks is trending towards a Hector Lombard level bust, maybe quicker.
  • This just can’t go smoothly in New York can they? Adding to the controversy from the weigh-ins, Gegard Mousasi picked up a highly controversial win. Weidman won the first round, but many would argue that the end resulted seemed inevitable with how the fight was playing out. The knees were legal, 100%. Weidman stopped fighting because the referee stopped the fight. His mistake, not Chris’s. The mayhem that followed was even more ridiculous. Once it was discovered the knees were good, Wiedman should have been told either to restart right now or you lose the fight via TKO. Go from there. I hope they have a rematch, but I don’t see things playing out much differently.
  • Daniel Cormier probably should have had his title stripped, but that is not important now. Anthony Johnson fought a very strange fight. Everyone was perplexed; the fans, his coaches, even Daniel Cormier. I wonder how much of knowing that he was done after this fight impacted his performance. Either way, “DC” is still the champ and Anthony is moving onto bigger and better things. Despite my disappointment in losing a great fighter, I hope he does well.
Final Thoughts

Cormier can’t get no love or respect no matter what he does. It probably stems from that fact that he lost to the mat that most view as the real champion. It also might be related to his incredibly vocal personality. I did enjoy his post-fight antics with both Manuwa and “Bones”. With White claiming that Jones won’t headline his first event back, my guess is Cormier fights Manuwa and Jones gets a warm-up bout in the co-main event. Ryan Bader would have been perfect for that spot. The UFC’s Light Heavyweight division takes another hit.

My prediction performance was pretty weak and when you make an ill-fated switch like I did in the Oliveira/Brooks fight it makes it even more difficult to swallow. We are right back at it in a week for UFC on FOX 24. The card looks good, time to get to work.

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Draftkings Line up

Fighter 1: Anthony Johnson $8100 
Fighter 2: Chris Weidman $7900 
Fighter 3: Jan Blachowicz $8200 
Fighter 4: Irene Aldana $7500 
Fighter 5: Magomed Bibulatov $9500 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Fighter 6: Gregor Gillespie $8600 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Salary Remaining:
Fighter 1: Thiago Alves $7700 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Fighter 2: 
Fighter 3: 
Fighter 4: 


Daniel Cormier +120 vs Anthony Johnson -125 

That weigh-in controversy looks awful sketchy. Cormier misses weight by 1.2 pounds, re-weighs and hits the mark almost right away. That must have been one magical towel. Regardless, Cormier looked terrible and you have to wonder how much this cut is going to take out of him. Will he be able to absorb much damage without going down? With a full camp and having learned from his mistakes, Johnson will fight a better fight and make his strikes count. I’ve got Rumble in my Bronze Pack. The line on Rumble is going to climb after the weigh-ins, bet accordingly.


If Johnson wins this fight it will most likely be by knockout. There are a couple of more expensive items we need to pick up, so  cheap fighter with a big time threat of scoring an early finish is exactly what we need. Add him.

Chris Weidman +105 vs Gegard Mousasi -111 

Weidman’s stock is down, time to invest. He has the type of wrestling heavy attack that has given Mousasi fits in the past. Gegard has been rolling, but he has beaten primarily striking based fighters where he could utilize his own wrestling skills. Weidman will be able to take him down and keep him there. I love the slight dog money here. Silver Play.


At $7900, Weidman is worth a play. While I don’t expect to see him get the finish, he is still capable of pulling it off. More likely he scores takedowns, lands a decent volume of strikes, and will probably advance position a few times to score as well. Add him.

Cynthia Calvillo -259 vs Pearl Gonzalez +231 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

We still don’t know a lot about these girls, but we do know that both have been through a bit of a roller coaster with the fight being cancelled and shortly after re-instated. I think Calvillo wins, but I will look at a prop option instead.


While I wouldn’t be shocked to see a finish here, Calvillo is expensive. I will invest elsewhere as a result.

Thiago Alves +135 vs Patrick Cote -131 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Both fighters are on the downturn, but that doesn’t mean that this can’t be a good fight. Alves is the better striker over 15-minutes. His leg kicks will play a massive role in slowing Cote down, who seemed at a loss to deal with the offense of Cerrone. Cote could look to take Thiago down, but that is a sizable deviation from what he does best. Alves lands more often and does more damage over 3 rounds. Keep an eye on Cote’s chin, the Cerrone fight could be the start of an older fighter granite chin failing. Silver Play.


Alves is worth considering at $7700, but considering Cote is traditionally tough to finish, I will stay away from him as a regular pick. He could be used if you have to free up some extra cash for use elsewhere.

Will Brooks -211 vs Charles Oliveira +200 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

I initially had Oliveira as my pick. I feel he could beat Brooks with greater volume/ variety on the feet and by being more active off his back. His activity level on the mat would both score points and prevent Brooks from looking for future takedowns. I will take a look at a Brooks prop, as I feel his win will come through grinding out Charles in the clinch and from top position. This line by itself isn’t much to look at.


While Oliveira’s durability is a question mark, especially against the heavier power of the LWs, I’m going to pass here.

Myles Jury +363 vs Mike De La Torre -400 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

No side bet here. Jury should take this fight, but the line is pretty undesirable.


I wanted to sub Jury and Alves into my lineup  for Gillespie and Blachowicz as a backup plan, but I fall $100 short of being able to include Rumble. I’ll pass.

Kamaru Usman -316 vs Sean Strickland +276 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Everyone seems to be on Strickland here. I just don’t see it. Usman is too aggressive and will make Strickland pay for his lack of offense. Usman might not be as good a striker, but he can still win on the feet- especially if Strickland hesitates for fear of the takedown. I have a prop in mind here.


Strickland won’t be an easy out and even with the potential for takedown points, Usman is just too expensive for a play.

Shane Burgos -200 vs Charles Rosa +206 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

I like Burgos here, but he needs to be a little more aggressive or a very active counter striker. The constant forward push and hit-ability of Rosa will help Burgos to find his mark with regularity. The layoff for Rosa will be a lot to overcome in a demanding fight. Look for “Boston Strong” to experience a bit of a drop off as the fight goes and Rosa to do some damage with his hands. Gold Play.


Nothing here. Rosa is a tougher out than Trator and should be able to go the distance.

Patrick Cummins -104 vs Jan Blachowicz -105 

Cummins can wrestling, but his striking defense is pretty bad, is offense isn’t much better, and it doesn’t take much to do damage. Glover was hurting him between takedowns and even Feijao was doing damage in his limited time on the feet. Blachowicz might get taken down, but he is going to score and will have enough pop to make it count. I can’t see Cummins consistently getting the take down without getting clipped. Jan gets the call to the Gold play.


Blachowicz is on the team. Cummins’s durability is non-existant and will open the door for the affordale Pole to pile up the points. Put him on the team.

Gregor Gillespie -239 vs Andrew Holbrook +216 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Gillespie is a good wrestler, but I have seen enough of him to know even if the mat exchanges aren’t going well- he will still pursue them. That is a little concerning against a fighter like Holbrook who wants the fight on the floor. Holbrook has won a pair of fights (against lesser wrestlers) while spending a lot of time on his back. I will take a shot on prop bet most likely, but this a straight bet of Gillespie is probably not going to happen.


I do like Gillespie here. He is going to score a lot of takedowns and that will pick up points. Holbrook’s durability is a bit of a question mark as well. He has been knocked out and Nijem hurt him. A stoppage isn’t out of the question. Add him.

Josh Emmett -186 vs Desmond Green +180 

Green needs to wrestle and wrestle well here. Emmett is going to be the physically stronger fighter with a lower center of gravity. When you mix in that he trains out TAM, he is going to be tough to take off his feet. Even if Green takes him down, I can’t see him doing with consistency over 3 rounds. He will tire. Emmett is the better striker and that shows up here. Close fight early, but Emmett will pull away. Gold Play.


I like Emmett to win, but your money is spent better elsewhere.

Katlyn Chookagian -134 vs Irene Aldana +135 

I like the number here. My first instinct was Chookagian replicates Smith’s success and outworks Aldana over 3 rounds. On further investigation- I don’t think she can. She isn’t as tough as Smith and relies too much on sticking to the outside which limits her volume. Aldana held her own in that fight and her speed, power, and technique will be too much for Chook. Aldana almost made the cut in my Gold Play- Silver it is.


All of Aldana’s wins have come in the first round. She is affordable, dangerous, and will be flying under the radar for most players. Add her.

Jenel Lausa +444 vs Magomed Bibulatov -450 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

No bet on Bibulatov here, at least to win straight up. Debuting with this type of line isn’t worth the investment.


I do like Mags as a Fantasy player. He will score for you in 1 of 2 ways. He is a takedown monster an should be able to play Lausa on the mat at will. That will score if he does that over 15-minutes. If it doesn’t last 15-minutes, it is most likely because Bibulatov synched it up with a submission win. Play him.


1. Myles Jury +363 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

2. Magomed Bibulatov -450 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

3. Cynthia Calvillo -259 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

4. Kamaru Usman -316 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

5. Shane Burgos -200 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med


6. Josh Emmett -186 

7. Gregor Gillespie -239 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

8. Jan Blachowicz -105 

9. Will Brooks -211 

10. Irene Aldana +135 

11. Chris Weidman +105 

12. Thiago Alves +135 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

13. Anthony Johnson -125 

1. Irene Aldana +135 

2. Thiago Alves +135 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

3. Chris Weidman +105 

4. Jan Blachowicz -105 

5. Will Brooks to Win by Decision +125 

1. Charles Oliveira +200: 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med I can’t overlook my original thought, I need to put a little bit down on Oliveira.






Exclusive Bet Pack Content.

Prop Bets


Daniel Cormier/Anthony Johnson 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

See Betting Scenario Section.

Cynthia Calvillo to Win by Submission +205 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

This fight was pull from many sites, so let’s hope they get it back up ASAP. Calvillo is coming off her first career submission win, but Gonzalez is the type of fighter that will want to engage on the floor. This should allow Calvillo to showcase her ground skills. Look for Pearl to go for something early, miss, lose position, and eventually wear down. This is a big step up for the newcomer and she has had a lot of quick finishes. Add in the debut factor and things are going to get tough the longer the fight goes.

Will Brooks to Win by Decision +125 

Brooks has won 7 of his last 8 wins by decision. He is a grinder and will look to neutralize Oliveira’s crafty mat game. I expect him to use his clinch and top game to do so. My biggest concern here is that Oliveira gets cracked either standing or on the mat and folds up shop. He has had some issues with taking big shots. Not always, but it is there to keep an eye on.

Myles Jury/Mike De La Torre 

See Betting Scenario Section.

Kamaru Usman to Win by Decision -135 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Usman can finish, but Strickland is pretty solid. He should be good enough defensively to hold up and his cardio will keep him from fading late. Usman will simply be busier; on the feet, in the clinch, and on mat. He should take a decision here against the frustratingly too passive Strickland.

Jan Blachowicz to Win by TKO/KO/DQ +190 

All of Cummins’s defeats have come by knockout. If he can’t wrestle his opponent to the mat and keep him there he is going to struggle to survive on the feet. Blachowicz hits hard enough to put him down. His hands look good early against Gus and while Gus used wrestling to beat him- Cummins lacks that level of striking to help him close the gap.

Gregor Gillespie to Win by Decision -115 

I am concerned that Gillespie’s raw power could be enough to put Holbrook down. If he doesn’t crack him, his top position wrestling game will give Holbrook fits for the full 15-minutes. I like him by decision.

Katlyn Chookagian/Irene Aldana 

See Betting Scenario Section.

Jenel Lausa/Magomed Bibulatov 

See Betting Scenario Section.